One factor that is contributing to German growth (16 March) is the increasing self-confidence of the Germans.

Although the transfers to the east continue – €1.3 trillion (£880 billion) to date – the increasing sense of job security is reducing angst among employees. And we are starting to see the return of entrepreneurial activity.

Actually, parts of this very regionalised economy have been growing steadily for the past 15 years – Bavaria is a good example.

David Scrimgeour, Munich